Diversity and inclusion are buzzwords in corporate America, but research suggests that the executives whom we expect to promote these issues may be in a counterproductive position. When women and minorities advocate for diversity, they are penalized.
Research shows women and people of color are scrutinized when they try to favor those like them — through promotions, assignments or other acts of faith — and the added burden can make them reluctant to promote diversity.
This leaves the responsibility, if it is to be most effective, to those already in positions of power: white men, predominantly.
Salesforce raised the issue of equal pay last year when CEO Marc Benioff announced he spent $3 million to bring the salaries of female employees up to par with their male counterparts. In September, Benioff also hired Tony Prophet, a former Microsoft executive, as the company's first chief equality officer.
"No one's opportunity should be defined by their gender," Prophet said at the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative symposium held on Thursday in New York City.
He offered five practical tips for male leaders to promote equality in the workplace.